A teen's take on keeping faith in America
Hello military community,
In honor of Veterans Day, I’d like to share the essay my 17-year-old daughter wrote for the Voice of Democracy Scholarship. Cheyenne has won local and her essay has moved on to district. The theme this year is “Why I’m Optimistic About Our Nation’s Future.”
As I sat before the computer to compose an honest response to this question it was hard for me not to let emotion get involved. Our nation was built by immigrants who left behind everyone and everything they knew to take a chance for a better future on nothing but hope, dreams and hard work.
So when I have to say goodbye every two years to my father to deploy overseas in the name of “freedom” and listen to the media and family discussing our unemployment rates, fraud within our government, politicians giving money to country’s that hate us and get into discussions at school with family, friends and others American’s doing the blame game for the government shut downs, debt default, problems with the Affordable Health Care Act and welfare along with the cost of living – I am frustrated and fear what lies ahead for me and my future.
My frustration stems from some people in society that seem focused on pitting one group against another and turning everything into fear in order to push their own agenda through. A society bent on bypassing the very laws our forefathers and ancestors fought for.
The idea that my family’s and other military families’ sacrifices are for a blank, false page in history is unimaginable. My father stays in the military and fights in the name of “freedom” – freedom of choice and better opportunities for me and future generations. For this I stay optimistic about our nation’s future.
This nation gives you choices and opportunities. This nation allows you to disagree with your leaders. This nation allows us to change our leaders. This nation fights for total equality among races, sexes, religions and sexual orientations, along with equal educational opportunities for the masses, not just a select few.
This is a nation that not only had, but continues to have, millions of Americans willing to join the armed forces to defend its constitution and die in the name of liberty, since the beginning. It emerged from a revolutionary war, a civil war, a great depression, world wars, civil rights movements and 9/11 – and it still came out strong.
I am optimistic that not only my generation, but “we the people” in general, will be able to stop this attack on our society that has changed our nation from within; with us being willful recipients of our politicians’ “change.” Change is needed. Not in the way that has been slowly taking away the foundations we fought for. I believe “we the people” are willing to fight politicians and intellectuals and force them out.
I am optimistic that “we the people” will take a stand and fight. America’s history shows we never stand down from a fight that threatens our very freedoms. Americans have nowhere to run that provides more freedoms than we already have. The reason for America’s success in World War II and previous wars was that we had something to fight for. Americans have to realize the villain is not another nation but comes from within. We still have something to fight for today. I am optimistic we can and will dig deep and find it.
It has begun; the sleeping giant has been awakened inside our nation. Rallies around the nation for our government to wake up and remember our history, constitution and laws, and get back to participating as representatives of “we the people” has been uplifting. I believe our nation is clamoring for individual responsibility and will fight until they get it back.
If I did not have optimism, I would wind up looking at temporary setbacks as un-scalable, permanent obstacles. I was raised with an understanding that without goals and hope, there is no reason to work hard, to push forward and to try again. To many, it is easier to give up, to give in, and to make do with what is already there. Our nation’s founders, my ancestors and my father have stayed optimistic in fighting for our freedom – and so will I.
I would like to thank all past and present military service members and their families for their service.
Blessings from my family to yours,
If you have any questions or concerns or would like to share a story or situation, contact me at Kim@MilitaryResourceBooks.com and visit my website at MilitaryResourceBooks.com for updated information and other resources not listed in my book.